Seventeen hours isn’t a whole lot of time to rest between basketball games, and it showed on Saturday, Dec. 23 when the Orrville (2-4) boys basketball team faced a tough Medina Buckeye (5-2) squad in game two of the WQKT Steve Smith Holiday Hoops Classic, hosted in Timken Gymnasium at the College of Wooster.
Fresh off a tough victory over conference rival Triway the night before, Orrville was looking to gift wrap two victories for the Christmas holiday. However, the battle-tested Bucks were too much for the young Red Riders as Buckeye jumped on Orrville in the opening quarter behind the strong shooting of junior Anthony Watkins and senior Spencer Imes. The Bucks ended up holding the lead for 31 minutes on their way to an easy nonconference victory.
Buckeye out-rebounded Orrville 31-25 and forced the Red Riders into 11 turnovers, which resulted in 17 points. On offense the Bucks shot a sizzling 43 percent from behind the arc for the first half and finished the game shooting 9-of-26 from downtown and 21-of-49 from the field overall. Unlike the night before against Triway, Orrville had trouble getting anything going from outside against the Bucks, shooting just 1-of-7 from 3-point land in the first half and finishing 5-of-15 for the game.
Watkins led Buckeye with 18 points, shooting 7-of-11 from the field and a perfect 3-for-3 from the charity stripe while also snagging four rebounds. Imes hit four 3-pointers on his way to 16 points and tied for the game high in rebounds with fellow senior and teammate Justin Canedy, both snagging six boards a piece. Junior Brock Brumfield ran the show from the point for Buckeye, dishing out eight assists and thieving four steals.
Orrville was led by sophomore Ben Underwood, who finished with nine points on a perfect 3-of-3 shooting in the paint. He also drained his only 3-point attempt. The 6′ 8″ sophomore got into foul trouble early and snagged just two rebounds, but the Red Riders were led on the glass by senior post Seth Hill and junior guard Ben Summers with five a piece. Junior guard Logan Domer and sophomore guard R’Kai Robinson paced the Red Riders overall in scoring with six points a piece. Junior guard Cayden McDaniel chipped in five points while dishing out a team-high four assists and two steals. Freshman Marquael Parks added five points and doled out three assists for Orrville.
The Red Riders return to the floor this Friday, Dec. 29 when they travel to Canal Fulton for a Principals Athletic Conference game with the Northwest Indians at 6 p.m.